Capt Chatree Chuwichien of Wichit Police was notified of the accident at around 1:30am and arrived at the scene at the intersection of Kwang Rd and Chao Fa West Rd in Wichit to find a man lying unconscious on the road bleeding heavily from the head in front of a Phuket-registered White Mercedes Benz S500 car that was damaged at the front.
A helmet was found on the road next to the man’s body.
Approximately 15 metres away was a Phuket-registered Honda Wave motorbike lying damaged on the road.
The motorcyclist was identified as 68-year-old Filipino, Rigoberto Ignacio, who was taken to Vachira Phuket Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.
The driver of the Mercedes, 48-year-old Cambodian national, Le Minh Thi, was waiting at the scene.
Investigations revealed that Mr Rigoberto was in the right-hand lane waiting at a red light to turn right onto Kwang Rd.
Mr Le was approaching at speed from behind and crashed into the back of Mr Rigoberto's motorbike.
Police tested Mr Le for alcohol and he was found to be more than two times over the legal limit at 112mg/100ml.
Mr Le confessed to drink-driving and was arrested and charged with drunk driving causing death and damage to property.
Asked why Mr Le was not charged with murder in accordance with Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon’s order on April 5 for police to charge speeding and drunk motorists who cause fatal accidents during the Songkran holiday with murder (see story here), Capt Chatree told The Phuket News that while investigations are ongoing, evidence will be gathered to determine whether a murder charge will be filed in due course.
Regarding the policy, Phuket Provincial Police Deputy Commander Col Pakin Na Ranong previously confirmed to The Phuket News, “Phuket Police will do everything in their power to follow Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon’s order for police to charge speeding and drunk motorists who cause fatal accidents during the Songkran holiday with murder.” (See story here.)